There has been a lot of buffalove in the media lately.
So, what are the factors that I think are driving young professionals to the region?
- Low cost of living: Buffalo was ranked by Forbes as America’s No. 1 most affordable city – and for good reason. Apartments, gym memberships, salons and restaurants boast extremely affordable rates, making it easier for young professionals to save for the future.
- An influx of other young professionals: Buffalo is a great city for young professionals – especially now. According to this article, “since 2000, Buffalo has seen a 34 percent spike in the number of recent college grads moving to the Queen City.” The New York Times and The Buffalo News also wrote articles recently about how college grads / young professionals are choosing Buffalo as the place to live.
- A developing downtown area: the development of downtown Buffalo (including HarborCenter, Canalside, Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and a growing number of hotels) has resulted in a tremendous amount of excitement and buzz about the city.
The development has resulted in tremendous growth in the number of living spaces in the area. The once dilapidated Hotel Lafayette is now home to a flower shop, makeup studio, three restaurants and me…. and the Hotel Lafayette is just one of the many loft-style apartments available. (The Ellicott Lofts, the Apartments at The Hub and the lofts at elk terminal are a few others.) This rise in loft-style apartments in downtown Buffalo means that young professionals have a large number of options to choose from if they want to live in the epicenter of the city’s development.
- Jobs: it seems as though every week, another article is written announcing that a major company plans to relocate to Buffalo and bring hundreds, sometimes thousands, of jobs with them.
- Cheap homes for sale: Buffalo’s Urban Homestead Program currently offers $1 homes to buyers who commit to restoring the residency and living there for at least 3 years. …not a bad offer for those with a D-I-Y passion, a dream and some disposable income.
- Sense of community: Buffalo isn’t called the City of Good Neighbors for nothing. The sense of pride, support and community that exists in Buffalo is unlike anything I’ve experienced in any other city. Despite the cold, there’s a warmth that exists in the residents of this city that can’t be described in words – you just have to experience it.
- Small community: The connectivity that exists among Buffalonians, combined with the fact that Buffalo is a relatively “small” city, means that it’s easy to get involved in the city’s growth and revitalization. It also means that for young professionals, it’s easier to make a name for yourself because you’re not just a small fish in an enormous pond (a feeling that exists among many young adults living in Manhattan.)
- Growing entrepreneurial hub: Thanks to efforts such as 43North, the world’s largest business plan competition, and Start-Up NY, there is a tremendous effort to get companies to move or expand in the Buffalo Niagara region.
If this video doesn’t immediately inspire and/or excite you, this city probably isn’t for you.
But if it does, I highly encourage you to pack your bags and shuffle off to Buffalo!